South Carolina General Assembly
108th Session, 1989-1990

Bill 4918

                    Current Status

Bill Number:               4918
Ratification Number:       676
Act Number                 551
Introducing Body:          House
Subject:                   State Recreational Waters Act
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(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)

(A551, R676, H4918)


Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:

State Recreational Waters Act

SECTION 1. Chapter 55, Title 44 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Article 23

Public Swimming Pools

Section 44-55-2310. This article may be cited as the State Recreational Waters Act.

Section 44-55-2320. As used in this article:

(1) `Board' means the Board of Health and Environmental Control.

(2) `Commissioner' means the commissioner of the department or his authorized agent.

(3) `Department' means the Department of Health and Environmental Control.

(4) `Person' means an individual, public or private corporation, political subdivision, governmental agency, municipality, industry, copartnership, association, firm, trust, estate, or any other legal entity. `Person' does not mean a church, synagogue, or religious organization.

(5) `Public swimming pool' means an artificial structure used to impound water to provide for such recreational uses as bathing, swimming, diving, wading, spraying, sliding, floating, rafting, or other similar usage which is not built in connection with a single family residence and the use of which is not confined to the family of the residence and its private guests, or which is not owned, constructed, operated, or maintained by a church, synagogue, or religious organization.

Section 44-55-2330. The department shall promulgate regulations, standards, and procedures necessary to protect the health and safety of the public and to ensure proper design, construction, and operation of public swimming pools. The regulations may prescribe minimum design criteria, the requirements for the issuance of construction and operation permits, operation and maintenance standards, and bacteriological, chemical, and physical standards for public swimming pool waters.

Section 44-55-2340. (A) No person may construct, materially alter, or enlarge a public swimming pool until an application for a construction permit has been submitted to, and a construction permit is issued by, the department. An application submitted for a construction permit must be signed by the owner and include drawings, plans, and specifications prepared and signed by an architect or engineer registered in this State which demonstrate compliance with the design standards promulgated by the department. No newly constructed or altered public swimming pool may be placed into operation until the department has conducted a final inspection and issued written approval that the construction is completed satisfactorily.

(B) No person may operate an existing public swimming pool until he has obtained an annual operating permit from the department for the calendar year in which the pool is to be operated. All annual operating permits expire on the last day of the calendar year for which they are issued. An annual operating permit for a newly constructed pool is not required until the calendar year following the year in which the pool is constructed.

(C) The owner shall operate and maintain his public swimming pool in a manner to provide water quality which is bacteriologically, chemically, and physically safe for swimming or its other intended use and assure that it is free from potential safety hazards to the users. The owner shall keep records of operation on forms approved by the department and shall make the records available to the department upon request. The records must include information as specified in the regulations promulgated by the department.

Section 44-55-2350. The department may establish and collect fees for the construction permits and the annual operating permits required by Section 44-55-2340 unless prohibited by the General Assembly.

Section 44-55-2360. It is unlawful for a person to fail to comply with the requirements of this article and regulations promulgated by the department including a permit or order issued by the board, commissioner, or department.

Section 44-55-2370. (A) Whenever the department finds that a person is in violation of a permit, regulation, standard, or requirement under this article, the department, after written notice of violation, may issue an order requiring the person to comply with the permit, regulation, standard, or requirement or may request the Attorney General to commence an action under this subsection in the appropriate court. The department also may assess civil penalties as provided in this section for violations of the provisions of this article, including any order, permit, regulation, or standard.

(B) A person who fails to take appropriate corrective action after receiving written notice of the violation of a provision of Section 44-55-2360 is liable for a civil penalty not to exceed five hundred dollars a day for the first violation; one thousand dollars a day for the second violation; and three thousand dollars a day for the third or subsequent violations which occur during the same year. Fifty percent of the penalties collected must be retained and used in the implementation of the recreational waters program, thirty percent must be forwarded to the county in which the violations occur, and twenty percent must be forwarded to the state's general fund.

Section 44-55-2380. For purposes of enforcing this article and regulations promulgated pursuant to this article, an employee or duly authorized representative of the department may enter at reasonable times the premises of a public swimming pool. The department, upon receipt of information that a public swimming pool may present an imminent and substantial hazard to the health of persons using the pool, may issue an order directing the owner or operator of the swimming pool to take steps necessary to eliminate the hazard. The action may include temporary cessation of operation of the public swimming pool."

Authority to regulate

SECTION 2. The department may use the authority of this act to enforce the requirements of an effective regulation relating to public swimming pools which were promulgated pursuant to Chapter 1, Title 44 of the 1976 Code so long as these requirements are consistent with the provisions of this act and until regulations are promulgated pursuant to the authority of this act.

Time effective

SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.

Approved the 6th day of June, 1990.